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Protests erupt after Eid prayers in Kashmir

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Srinagar: Protests erupted at some places in the Kashmir Valley on Saturday after the Eid-ul-Fitr prayers ended. 6133464099_0d48b589bc_o

Stone-pelting youths took to the streets in the Safa Kadal area of old city Srinagar as police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel used batons and tear smoke canisters to disperse the protesters.

The youth also engaged the security forces in pitched battles in the Barzalla area of Srinagar. The protesters kept regrouping each time the security forces dispersed them.

Around 150 angry protesters started pelting stones at police in Lal Chowk area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag town.

In Sogam town of north Kashmir Kupwara district, the protesters pelted stones at the security forces and raised anti-India and pro-freedom slogans.

At some places in Srinagar city, masked youths displayed Pakistani flags, but they were quickly dispersed by the police.

Senior separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani and Muhammad Yasin Malik continued to remain under house arrest on Saturday as authorities did not allow them to join the congregational Eid prayers.

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Facts About PoK You Probably Didn’t Know Before

Although 'Azad Kashmir' is of no economic significance to either Pakistan or India, the region is rather a matter of pride

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PoK is one of the most controversial regions in the world. Wikimedia Commons
PoK is one of the most controversial regions in the world. Wikimedia Commons

By Ruchika Verma

  • PoK or Pakistan Occupied Kashmir is a controversial land
  • The region is the reason for tension between India and Pakistan
  • Pakistan Administered Kashmir is the hub for terrorist activities and is controlled by Pakistan entirely

Pakistan Occupied Kashmir or PoK is the land of much controversy. The region which is also known as Azad Kashmir in Pakistan has been a matter of controversy between India and Pakistan since 1947.

Pakistan Administered Kashmir is a controversial region for both India and Pakistan. Wikimedia Commons
Pakistan Administered Kashmir is a controversial region for both India and Pakistan. Wikimedia Commons

United Nations and other international organizations refer to PoK as ‘Pakistan Administered Kashmir.’ This region shares its border with China and Afghanistan and as mentioned above is a very controversial region of crucial importance to both the disputing countries.

Here are few facts about PoK you may not have known before:

  • Even before independence, PoK was never ruled by the Britishers directly. It was under the rule of Maharaja Hari Singh, who wanted to keep Jammu and Kashmir as an independent state when given the choice to choose between India and Pakistan.
  • PoK covers an area of 13,297 square kilometres which is approximate, 5,134 sq. mi. The capital is located at Muzaffarabad.
  • ‘Azad Kashmir’ has a population of around 4.6 million people.
  • 26th October is celebrated as the Accession Day. On this day, Maharaja Hari Singh, the ruler of Jammu and Kashmir signed the Instrument of Accession to India in the year 1947.

    PoK was supposed to be a free, independent state. Wikimedia Commons
    PoK was supposed to be a free, independent state. Wikimedia Commons
  • However, Kashmiri separatists celebrate Accession Day as ‘Black Day.’
  • The Pakistan Occupied Kashmir claims to be having its own self-governing legislative assembly, however, it is no hidden fact that it is controlled by Pakistan only behind the scenes.
  • In PoK, the President is the head of the state, and the Prime Minister is the chief executive, supported by the Council of Ministers. Pakistan Occupied Kashmir also has its own high court and supreme court.

Also Read: Pakistan, China play catch and throw with POK

  • PoK is famous for the terrorist activity in its region. Lashkar-e-Taiba, one of the biggest terrorist organisations in the world has several camps in the region.
  • There is no freedom of expression for media in PoK. All media is controlled by Pakistan, including its only radio channel, Azad Kashmir Radio.

    Majority of Azad Kashmir's population earns their livelihood by the means of agriculture. Wikimedia Commons
    Majority of Azad Kashmir’s population earns their livelihood by the means of agriculture. Wikimedia Commons
  • 85% of the population is engaged in agricultural activities. They cultivate wheat, maize, mushroom, honey, apples, walnuts, etc., which are the main source of income for them.
  • Although ‘Azad Kashmir’ is of no economic significance to either Pakistan or India, the region is rather a matter of pride for which both the countries keep on fighting.

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